Stocks skidded Friday in a wave of selling that wiped out most of the market’s gains from earlier this week.
A drop in oil prices took energy companies sharply lower. Investors were also troubled by a poll showing Britain may be more likely to leave the European Union.
Oil prices fell by the largest amount in two months, and banks slumped as bond yields fell for the second consecutive day, pulling interest rates lower. Machinery, technology and consumer stocks also lost ground. It was the market’s biggest loss in more than three weeks.
Eric Wiegand, senior portfolio manager for U.S. Bank’s Private Client Reserve, said investors are guessing at the outcome of the British referendum and the Federal Reserve’s meeting next week, as well as the impending U.S. presidential election.
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“There’s just not a good way to handicap the outcome just yet,” he said.
The Dow Jones industrial average fell 119.85, or 0.67 percent, to 17,865.34.
The Standard & Poor’s 500 index fell 19.41, or 0.92 percent, to 2,096.07.
The Nasdaq composite fell 64.07, or 1.29 percent, to 4,894.55.
U.S. crude oil fell $1.49, or 2.9 percent, to $49.07 a barrel in New York.
Stocks started the week with three days of gains and reached their highest levels in months, but they finished back where they started. For the week, the Dow was a bit higher, the Nasdaq was lower and the S&P 500 was essentially unchanged.